YOU ASK:

A warranty deed vs. a quit claim: Which One Should I Use?

WE ANSWER:

When it comes to transferring property from one party or another, it really depends on the details of the transaction to determine whether a quit claim deed or a warranty deed is the best for your case. Let us discuss the attributes of each.

A warranty deed certifies that:

  • the seller is the owner of the property
  • the seller has no outstanding accounts on the property - this includes homeowners dues, liens, and other debts
  • the seller is not aware of any hidden defects on the policy
  • if there is anything wrong with the title, the warranty deed serves as the protection of the new seller and the seller is held responsible to compensate the buyer

Meanwhile, a quit claim deed:

  • is often used when the person just holds an interest or responsibility for the property, and is not necessarily the legal owner of the property. This can be the case when a couple is about to get divorced or when the property is being transferred as an inheritance.
  • The grantor signs off his interest in the property to the grantee. If the grantor is the real owner of the property and the quit claim deed is properly signed, notarized and recorded, the grantee becomes the new owner of the property.

Warranty deeds are better than quit claim deed in that it provides more protection for the buyer. With a warranty deed, the buyer has legal recourse should something wrong with the title come up (such as the appearance of claimants to the property).

That is why we advise you to avoid quit claim deeds and instead request for a warranty deed. It is best that you consult with a lawyer for this. This will help ensure that you have total ownership rights and adequate legal protection with regards to the property.

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